piratekitten has declared February world-building month.
Every day in February (or most days), I will answer one question about any one of my settings.
The question post is here, please feel free to add more questions!
What actually happens when someone becomes The Aunt?
It differs for every Aunt and differs with every branch of the family, but the basics of it remain more or less the same.
The entire family, out to the rare person the family has lost touch with who might not even know what an Aunt is, and right in to the sisters and mother of the Aunt (if they are still alive; the Aunts are often very long-lived), feels a snap of loss when the Aunt dies, no matter how far away they are; depending on the power of the Aunt, other branches of the family may feel it as well.
At that moment, the Aunt needs to have chosen a successor. If she has not – and that does happen on occasion – the power chooses someone itself. This can lead to… issues.
Assuming the Aunt has chosen a successor, the power does the psychic equivalent of knocking on said successor’s door; she has some sort of sensation, often likened to a very very large dog waiting patiently or, in more rare cases, to suddenly being under the crest of a wave about to fall.
It is always a question, however, always an invitation. The power does not invade without the soon-to-be Aunt’s consent.
But, again, if she says no – and a few have – the power chooses someone else. And, again, this can lead to problems.
Almost all members of the extended bloodline of the Aunt Family have some psychic power; the successor to the Aunt line usually has more than her fair share of what is called the Sight, the Skill, and the Spark.
This has been described as dialing that all up to eleven.
The power overwhelms the new Aunt for a moment – longer if she is not particularly strong, shorter if she is very strong – and then settles in. With it comes not so much memories as vague feelings accumulated through the years – there is no trace of the former Aunts in this, but there is, instead, memories the power has of the Aunts it has served.
And then it is hers, until she dies and the process begins again.
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